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Accelerating our Smart Transport Future

Author: NRMA 

Excerpt taken from the introduction of the paper

The NRMA’s Smart Transport Future, an internally produced document, identifies and examines the challenges that NSW and the ACT face over the next 15 years. These challenges include population growth in our cities at the expense of rural and regional areas, the corresponding impact of congestion on our roads and the economy, an ageing population and diminishing public resources – all factors that may limit the ability of government to invest in new road and transport infrastructure projects and adequately maintain the current road network. To this end, the paper examines how smart technology can keep NSW and the ACT moving.

The paper uses real world examples to demonstrate how global cities are successfully adopting smart transport technologies to prepare for the future. It also provides recommendations to government about how similar technologies and solutions could be implemented in NSW and the ACT to meet our future transport challenges today. NRMA’s recommendations contained within the paper encourages government to promote and adopt smart technologies across a range of areas, including autonomous vehicles, smart parking, managed motorways, mobility and electric vehicles. NRMA hopes that these recommendations will encourage the NSW and ACT Governments to continue to be proactive and adopt innovative solutions to solve our future transport challenges.

Given technology is rapidly evolving every day, it is assumed that many smart solutions identified within the paper will eventually be superseded. It is noted that this paper is not intended to be a definitive guide to all smart transport technologies, but aims to provide a snapshot of how current technology can be adopted to pave the way for a smart transport future. NRMA would like to acknowledge the assistance of Intel Australia in developing this paper by providing practical examples about how smart technologies are transforming mobility around the world.

Category: Future Trends & Possibilies Transport

Added by Elizabeth Dodd · 11 months ago

iPad Apps for Complex Communication Support Needs: Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)

Author: Call Scotland


This 'wheel' of AAC Apps by Sally Millar and Gillian McNeill of CALL Scotland, provides a categorised guide to iPad Apps for people with complex communication support needs, who may need to use some form(s) of Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC).

There are many hundreds of communication apps and deciding how to categorise them - never mind identifying the best fit to meet the needs of an individual user - is complicated. We define some Apps (from 12 o'clock round to 6) as potential full 'expressive' communication systems. Whether text and/or symbol based, these tend to be highly featured, and as a defining feature, include text to speech, a built-in symbol library, at least one or two sample pre-stored user vocabulary sets, and an onscreen message bar to allow for sentence/message building.

Other Apps (from 6 o'clock round to 9) are classed as more 'simple' forms of communication. These may provide basic, functional ways of expressing needs and making choices, or for recording news or stories. They contain limited, if any, starter content and will be customised for the user from 'bottom-up' using familiar photos and pictures, and recorded messages. Others may use the iPad to mirror and add speech output to particular low tech communication approaches such as PECS. Finally, many are useful for building basic vocabulary and language skills, receptively as much as expressively.

Users may use a 'set' of various Apps from different categories at different times - there is no single 'best' App.

Most Apps are controlled by direct touch, and many (but not all), will run under switch control within iOS 7 (onwards) Accessibility settings. A few were specifically designed for switch access and these are marked in this wheel with small red 's' (beside App icon).

The CALL Scotland AAC Apps wheel does not include every App available in each category. It shows Apps that CALL finds useful: reliable, relatively straightforward to use; reasonable/good value for money; and / or that stand out in their category for some reason.

The AAC Apps wheel was originally published as an A3 poster, but works equally well (only smaller!) as an A4 leaflet. The App names on the electronic version are 'clickable' links, taking you directly to more information about the individual App on the UK iTunes site.

iPad Apps for Complex Communication Support Needs was last updated in June 2015

Revision changes

June 2016

Apps removed - AAC Ferret, EasySpeak HD, Autismate 365, Answers Yes/No, AAC 123

Apps added - Tools 2 Talk+, Totaltalk AAC, CoughDrop, AAC Speak, Snap Scene, iSpeak Button Series, Board Communicator, Early Language Screening Tool Bundle

January 2016

Tools 2 Talk is no longer available to purchase and has been removed from the wheel. We have added an 's' to Pictello, as switches can be configured for playing a story.

May 2015

There has been no change to the App categories, only to the Apps listed. The number of Apps has increased to 77, which includes Tool 2 Talk, a resource for creating and printing symbolised communication resources, detailed separately given the App type.

Category: Communication Mobile Technologies Smart AT General

Added by Elizabeth Dodd · 1 year ago

New Webinar Available: Harnessing Technology to Improve How Children with Cerebral Palsy Use Their Hands

Author:  CCSATC & David Hobbs

Published By:  CCSATC

Published on:  4 July, 2016

In this webinar, David Hobbs from Flinders University will discuss technologies that will enhance lives and in particular improve hand function of children with cerebral palsy.

Please follow the link below to access the webinar: 

Harnessing Technology to Improve How Children with Cerebral Palsy Use Their Hands 

Category: Videos

Added by Imogen Guiney · 1 year ago

Driving Mobility & Independence through the use of Smart Assistive Technology


Author:  CCSATC & ReWalk

Published By:  CCSATC

Published on:  21 April, 2016

In this webinar Kristee Shepherd and Genny Kroll-Rosen from ReWalk discuss the prevalence of spinal injuries and the role that Smart Assistive Technology can play for Service Providers and Consumers. The use of exoskeleton technology is highlighted in this webinar as well as demonstrations of this technology in deployment. The presenters also explore the economic impact and future possibilities of Smart Assistive Technologies in the area of mobility for those with spinal injuries.



Category: Mobility Videos

Added by Nathaniel Hickey · 1 year ago

New Webinar Available: SAL - A Nutrition-Related Technological Resource for Older Adults

In this webinar QUT Nutrition and Dietician Students on placement at Community Resourcing present their project on developing an appropriate nutrition-related technological resource for older adults. 

Alice Blakely, Sissy Mok and Hui Bing Lee used their community placement to focus on the innovative use of technology in the nutrition field to encourage healthy eating in participants through a mobile text messaging system named SAL. Upon discovering a lack of assistive technology within the area of nutrition and health, and particularly in an Australian context, the students aimed to close this gap. This project successfully displayed how smart assistive technology can enhance nutritional outcomes as well as the overall health and wellbeing of participants. 

Please follow the link below to access the webinar: 

SAL - A Nutrition-Related Technological Resource for Older Adults 

Category: Future Trends & Possibilies Mobility

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago

Traditional Telehealth Model is ‘Dead’ as Wearables Take Over: CCSATC Expert Kevin Doughty

Author: Natasha Egan

Published By: Australian Ageing Agenda Technology Review 

Published:  2016

Dr. Kevin Doughty is a CCSATC Expert Reference group member and Director of the Centre for Usable Home Technologies (CUHTec) at the Universities of Coventry, Newcastle and York. A leading expert in the use of ICT in aged care, Dr. Doughty has urged providers to be agile when it comes to choosing technology, citing Telehealth boxes that have been "overtaken" by more suitable wearable devices. 

"That equipment should be taken off from the shelf and put straight into the bin because they have been overtaken by things that better, more usable, and far more conducive to the public." Dr Doughty told Technology Review. 

All the sign were pointing to a future involving wearable devices, rather than "Telehealth boxes," said Dr Doughty. 

Clients were constrained by traditional Telehealth equipments that had to used in the home at a particular time, he said. Instead, devices needed to become ambulatory so they could be worn by individuals, who were increasingly interested in something that matched their persona. 

Please follow the link below to access the full article: 

Traditional telehealth model is ‘dead’ as wearables take over: expert

Category: Future Trends & Possibilies International Perspectives Smart AT General

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago

Webinar: Smart Assistive Technology Driving Changes in Management of Continence

Author: CCSATC & Simavita

Published By: CCSATC 

Published On: 17 March 2016

In this webinar, Leonie Mulheran from Simavita will discuss the prevalence of incontinence and importance of management in both the younger and the aged population and gender specific issues. Importantly, Leonie will discuss the role that Smart Assistive Technology could play for the Service Provider & the Consumer as well as economic impact and future possibilities. 

This webinar can be accessed by following the link below:

Smart Assistive Technology Driving Changes in Management of Continence

Category: Domestic Assistance Future Trends & Possibilies Local Perspectives Mobile Technologies Quality & Standards Smart AT General Smart Homes & Environmental Controls

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago

How Playing 3D Video Games Could Help Boost Memory

Author: Honor Whiteman

Published By: Medilexicon International Ltd.

Published On: 12 December 2015


Good news for all of you video game buffs out there; a new study finds playing 3D video games may help boost memory, possibly opening the door to a new way to maintain cognitive functioning as we age.

 

Video games are not normally viewed in a positive light in terms of health; previous studies have claimed they promote sedentary behavior, while violent video games have been linked to aggressive behavior and reduced self-control.

 

Increasingly, however, researchers are finding video games may have some benefits. Earlier this year, Medical News Today reported on a study that found Tetris could reduce cravings, while other research suggested story-based video games could help people with autism.

 

Now, researchers from the University of California-Irvine (UCI) suggest the benefits of video games could reach even further, possibly helping people with dementia or other conditions associated with memory loss.

 

They publish their findings in The Journal of Neuroscience.

 

3D video games improved memory performance by 12%

 

Study coauthors Craig Stark and Dane Clemenson, of the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning & Memory at UCI, asked a number of non-gamer college students to play one of two video games for 30 minutes daily for 2 weeks - either the 2D game "Angry Birds" or the 3D game "Super Mario 3D world."

 

Students took part in memory tests both before and after the 2-week gaming period, which involved them viewing images of specific everyday objects. They were then shown images of the same objects, new objects and objects that differed slightly from the original images and were asked to categorize each one.

 

Such tests engage the hippocampus - the brain region associated with memory and learning - according to Stark, and previous studies he conducted showed that the ability to perform well on such tests reduces as we age.

 

Compared with students who played the 2D game over the 2-week period, those who played the 3D game improved memory performance by around 12%.

 

To put this in context, the team notes that between the ages of 45-70, memory performance normally reduces by around 12%, suggesting that 3D video games could help maintain cognitive functioning as we age.

 

But why do 3D video games appear to boost memory while 2D games do not?

 

3D games may increase neuronal growth, signaling in the hippocampus

 

Previous studies by Clemenson and colleagues found rodents that explored an environment showed increased neuronal growth and signaling in the hippocampus, and the team notes there are similarities between the environment the rodents explored and the 3D game the students played.

 

Stark explains that 3D games contain more spatial information than 2D, giving the player more to explore. What is more, 3D games are significantly more complex, meaning the player has more to learn.

 

Stark adds that video games activate cognitive processes, including visual, spatial, attentional, motivational and emotional processes, as well as critical thinking, problem-solving and working memory.

 

"It's quite possible that by explicitly avoiding a narrow focus on a single [...] cognitive domain and by more closely paralleling natural experience, immersive video games may be better suited to provide enriching experiences that translate into functional gains," he explains.

 

Next, the team plans to determine whether 3D video games or other real-world exploration experiences can help reverse cognitive declines in older individuals.

 

"Can we use this video game approach to help improve hippocampus functioning? It's often suggested that an active, engaged lifestyle can be a real factor in stemming cognitive aging," says Stark. "While we can't all travel the world on vacation, we can do many other things to keep us cognitively engaged and active. Video games may be a nice, viable route."

 

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/303789.php

Category: Future Trends & Possibilies International Perspectives Research Smart AT General Videos Virtual Environments

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago

Google Glass Apps for People with Disability Trialed by Telstra

Author: Media Access Australia 

Published By: Media Access Australia 

Published:  2016 

"The potential benefits of Google Glass for people with disability are becoming a reality thanks to a partnership between Telstra and app developers b2cloud.

Two Telstra employees – Kelly Schulz, who is blind, and Peter Miller, who is hearing impaired – were each given a Google Glass device with assistive apps installed. “These apps have been developed to see what could be done with technology to make the lives of hearing and vision impaired people a little easier,” said Telstra on itsblog(link is external).

In the video embedded below, Schulz demonstrates shopping using an optical recognition app on her Glass device. The app identifies a bag of peas and reads out the label. “To have that hands-free ability to identify objects, being connected to a fast network, being connected to the world and have it all private in your ear, on your head – fantastic!” said Schulz.

For Miller, an app provides a transcript of conversations in real time right before his eyes. “I can be a more active participant in meetings and conversations and I can walk into any meeting whatsoever without needing to book any special [captioning] services,” he said.

Tim O’Leary, Telstra’s Chief Sustainability Officer, said, “It’s the same technology for able people and people with disability. […] There’s a real sort of equity I think with the technology. The design is the same for everybody and that makes a huge difference for people’s self-esteem.”

Although Google Glass is not yet available to purchase in Australia, projects such as this will help ensure that the benefits of the technology for people with disability are realised by the time it enters the market. However, price may be a barrier for some with the device currently selling for over US$2,000."

Category: Hearing Smart AT General

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago

Google Glass Apps for People with Disability Trialed by Telstra

 Author: Media Access Australia

Published by: Media Access Australia

Published: 2012

"The potential benefits of Google Glass for people with disability are becoming a reality thanks to a partnership between Telstra and app developers b2cloud.

Two Telstra employees – Kelly Schulz, who is blind, and Peter Miller, who is hearing impaired – were each given a Google Glass device with assistive apps installed. “These apps have been developed to see what could be done with technology to make the lives of hearing and vision impaired people a little easier,” said Telstra on itsblog(link is external).

In the video embedded below, Schulz demonstrates shopping using an optical recognition app on her Glass device. The app identifies a bag of peas and reads out the label. “To have that hands-free ability to identify objects, being connected to a fast network, being connected to the world and have it all private in your ear, on your head – fantastic!” said Schulz.

For Miller, an app provides a transcript of conversations in real time right before his eyes. “I can be a more active participant in meetings and conversations and I can walk into any meeting whatsoever without needing to book any special [captioning] services,” he said.

Tim O’Leary, Telstra’s Chief Sustainability Officer, said, “It’s the same technology for able people and people with disability. […] There’s a real sort of equity I think with the technology. The design is the same for everybody and that makes a huge difference for people’s self-esteem.”

Although Google Glass is not yet available to purchase in Australia, projects such as this will help ensure that the benefits of the technology for people with disability are realised by the time it enters the market. However, price may be a barrier for some with the device currently selling for over US$2,000."

Access the full story here: http://www.mediaaccess.org.au/latest_news/digital-technology/google-glass-apps-for-people-with-disability-trialled-by-telstra

Category: Hearing Smart AT General

Added by Lisa Kelly · 1 year ago